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CAMEL

Symphonic Prog • United Kingdom


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Camel picture
Camel biography
Formed in 1971 in Guildford, Surrey, UK - Disbanded in 1984 - Reformed from 1991 to 2003 and again since 2013

The roots of CAMEL go as far as 1964, when the Latimer brothers Andrew and Bryan form part of a band called THE PHANTOM FOUR, after gaining some fame, the band changes their name to STRANGE BREW, a when the bass player Graham Cooper reaches the band. But things were about to change, Ian Latimer and Cooper leave the band and Doug Ferguson joins.

At this point drummer Andrew Ward joins the crew and the seeds were growing in this new Blues oriented band called simply THE BREW, and at last in 1971 with the arrival of keyboardist Peter Bardens CAMEL is officially born.

In their first period CAMEL releases four albums, the self titled debut, which was received with limited enthusiasm by the public, which lead to the change of label from MCA (Who didn't wanted to take risks) to Decca, with whom they stayed for 10 years.

Followed by "Mirage", Snow Goose" and "Moonmadness" (for many their essential trilogy), during the latest album tour, the saxophonist and flute player Mel Collins joins and leads CAMEL to a first radical change in the sound, as well as in the formation because Doug Ferguson is replaced by the Ex CARAVAN bass player RICHARD SINCLAIR.

With this formation CAMEL releases two albums, "Rain Dances and "Breathless", which marks for many the end of CAMEL'S golden era mainly because Pete Bardens leaves the band and the next release "I Can See Your House From Here" is considered inferior to the previous releases by the critic.

From this point the lineups constantly changes but the band still releases seven more albums received with different degrees of acceptance, until the last studio album "A Nod And a Wink" sees the light in 2002 (the same year Pete Bardens passes away) completing a large discography of 14 studio releases, 9 live albums, 7 DVD's and several box sets .

Maybe because their style is softer than most of the pioneer bands with atmospheric and light Space Rock overtones their fanbase is not as huge as the ones of the coetaneous and more aggressive bands such as GENESIS (Who in my opinion influenced CAMEL), YES or KING CRIMSON, but CAMEL is without doubt among the most respected groups, and the Latimer - Bardens duo is considered one of the most creative compositional teams.

If I h...
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Camel- MirageCamel- Mirage
Remastered
Universal I.S. 2002
$6.10
$5.99 (used)
MoonmadnessMoonmadness
Remastered
Polygram Uk 2002
$6.09
$9.10 (used)
CamelCamel
Remastered
MSI:UNIVERSAL/UM3 2002
$5.95
$4.43 (used)
The Snow GooseThe Snow Goose
Remastered
Polygram Uk 2002
$4.76
$3.98 (used)
Stationary Traveller (ger)Stationary Traveller (ger)
Universal I.S. 1989
$4.90
$4.00 (used)
Paris CollectionParis Collection
Camel Productions 2001
$8.49
$8.48 (used)
AnthologyAnthology
Universal I.S. 2001
$6.08
$7.01 (used)
The Snow GooseThe Snow Goose
Camel Productions 2013
$16.99
$19.67 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Camel (CD Used Like New) USD $6.39 Buy It Now
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6h 28m
1950S VG-RARE David Seville Gotta Get To Your House / Camel Rock F-55079 45 USD $2.24 Buy It Now 6h 37m
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CAMEL: I Can See Your House From Here LP ARISTA RECORDS AB4254 US 1979 PROMO NM USD $10.39 Buy It Now 12h 57m
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The Sopwith Camel: Hello Hello / Treadin' / Kama Sutra 217 / 1966 USD $4.65 Buy It Now 19h 2m
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Camel vinyl LP album record Moonmadness - 1st UK TXS-R115 DECCA 1976 USD $63.63 Buy It Now 20h 26m
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CAMEL rain dances (original uk & inner) LP EX/EX TXS-R 124 art rock prog 1977 USD $31.91 Buy It Now 22h 34m
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CAMEL discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

CAMEL top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.96 | 1202 ratings
Camel
1973
4.40 | 2456 ratings
Mirage
1974
4.30 | 2120 ratings
The Snow Goose
1975
4.38 | 2105 ratings
Moonmadness
1976
3.60 | 886 ratings
Rain Dances
1977
3.14 | 724 ratings
Breathless
1978
2.87 | 621 ratings
I Can See Your House From Here
1979
3.62 | 694 ratings
Nude
1981
2.61 | 451 ratings
The Single Factor
1982
3.42 | 636 ratings
Stationary Traveller
1984
3.68 | 474 ratings
Dust And Dreams
1991
3.76 | 556 ratings
Harbour Of Tears
1996
4.05 | 789 ratings
Rajaz
1999
3.95 | 644 ratings
A Nod And A Wink
2002
4.20 | 521 ratings
The Snow Goose (Re-recording)
2013

CAMEL Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.32 | 383 ratings
A Live Record
1978
3.33 | 159 ratings
Pressure Points
1984
3.69 | 115 ratings
Camel On The Road 1972
1992
4.45 | 157 ratings
Never Let Go
1993
2.44 | 69 ratings
Camel On The Road 1982
1994
3.35 | 65 ratings
Camel On The Road 1981
1997
4.28 | 131 ratings
Coming Of Age
1998
3.84 | 70 ratings
Camel 73 - 75 Gods of Light
2000
3.61 | 74 ratings
The Paris Collection
2001

CAMEL Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

2.54 | 41 ratings
Pressure Points - Live in Concert
1984
4.54 | 110 ratings
Coming Of Age (DVD)
1998
2.91 | 25 ratings
Curriculum Vitae
2003
3.94 | 46 ratings
Footage
2004
3.81 | 35 ratings
Footage II
2005
4.06 | 40 ratings
Total Pressure - Live In Concert 1984
2007
3.91 | 57 ratings
Moondances
2007
4.40 | 78 ratings
The Opening Farewell - Live At The Catalyst (DVD)
2010
4.41 | 35 ratings
In From The Cold
2014
4.32 | 22 ratings
Ichigo Ichie - Live in Japan 2016
2017

CAMEL Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

1.98 | 17 ratings
Chameleon (Best Of Camel)
1981
3.32 | 20 ratings
The Collection
1985
3.74 | 31 ratings
A Compact Compilation
1985
2.45 | 10 ratings
Landscapes
1991
3.47 | 55 ratings
Echoes
1993
2.37 | 10 ratings
Camel (25th Anniversary Compilation)
1997
4.09 | 33 ratings
Lunar Sea - An Anthology 1973-1985
2001
4.00 | 2 ratings
Supertwister - Best
2006
4.17 | 39 ratings
Rainbow's End - A Camel Anthology 1973 - 1985
2010

CAMEL Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.96 | 30 ratings
Never Let Go
1973
4.67 | 9 ratings
The Snow Goose
1975
3.39 | 9 ratings
Flight Of The Snow Goose
1975
3.84 | 25 ratings
Another Night
1976
3.46 | 16 ratings
Highways of the Sun
1977
4.14 | 7 ratings
Breathless
1978
3.50 | 4 ratings
Your Love Is Stranger Than Mine
1979
4.00 | 2 ratings
Some Exerpts From The New Camel Album
1979
2.00 | 3 ratings
Remote Romance
1979
3.33 | 3 ratings
Remote Romance (German Version)
1979
5.00 | 1 ratings
Camel In Concert No.250
1981
4.00 | 5 ratings
Lies
1981
3.57 | 7 ratings
No Easy Answer
1982
3.80 | 5 ratings
Selva
1982
3.19 | 7 ratings
Cloak And Dagger Man
1984
2.60 | 7 ratings
Long Goodbyes
1984
2.50 | 2 ratings
Berlin Occidental (West Berlin)
1984
2.50 | 2 ratings
Lies (Promo Single)
1984
4.00 | 4 ratings
Captured
1986
4.83 | 21 ratings
Never Let Go
2002

CAMEL Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Chameleon (Best Of Camel) by CAMEL album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1981
1.98 | 17 ratings

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Chameleon (Best Of Camel)
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Review N 190

Formed in 1972 in Surrey, Camel originally consisted of Andy Latimer, Andy Ward, Doug Fergusson and Peter Bardens.

By the end of 1973, the band released their eponymous debut album "Camel" and in 1974 they released their second "Mirage". In 1975, Camel released their breakthrough album, their third album "The Snow Goose", a great commercial success in England. The band's English audience declined in 1976 with their fourth album "Moonmadness". The album was more successful in America. Following the release of "Moonmadness", Fergusson left the group and was replaced by Richard Sinclair, ex-Caravan. At the same time, the band added the saxophonist Mel Collins. In 1977 they released their fifth album "Rain Dances". In 1978 they released their sixth album "Breathless". Then Bardens quit the group. Before recording their next seventh album "I Can See Your House From Here", in 1979, Camel replaced Bardens with two keyboardists Kit Watkins from Happy The Man and Jim Schelhaas from Caravan, and replaced Sinclair by Colin Bass. By the time they released "I Can See Your House From Here", rock music had been changed due to punk rock. That resulted in less press coverage for progressive rock and the inevitable decreased record sales of those groups. So, Camel suffered this shift too and "I Can See Your House From Here" received much less attention than any of the band's releases since their debut. Still, Latimer returned to writing conceptual albums with their next eighth release, "Nude", in 1981. On this compilation, we have only songs that belong to these eight studio albums, from Camel.

"Chameleon (Best Of Camel)" is a compilation of Camel and was released in 1981. It was only released on LP format. It has eleven tracks. The first track "Echoes" was released on "Breathless". "Echoes" is a typical Camel's song and represents one of the most progressive songs on that album. It's a song with great guitar work. It's the best track on that album. This is Camel at their best. The second track "Rhayader" was released on "The Snow Goose". "Rhayader" is an excellent track with a powerful melody combining flute, guitar and organ performed in classical influenced music with medium tempo. It has a memorable flute melody supported by an organ solo. The third track "Rhayader Goes To Town" was released on "The Snow Goose". "Rhayader Goes To Town" brings the music into faster tempo, with great combination of guitar and organ with energetic beats. It has an extended guitar solo too. The fourth track "Song Within A Song" was released on "Moonmadness". "Song Within A Song" is a calm, beautiful, and melancholic song which contrasts with the deepest voice of Ferguson. It's an excellent song with a nice and relaxing guitar and flute works. This is a typical Camel's song. The fifth track "Remote Romance" was released on "I Can See Your House From Here". "Remote Romance" is unqualified for a Camel's song. It's a pop electronic new wave song completely dislocated of the group's music and even of that album. It's an awful song. The sixth track "Nude" was released on "Nude". "Nude" is a very short track with only 0:23. It's a kind of a link between the previous and the next track. The seventh track "Drafted" was released on "Nude". "Drafted" is stuffed with great melodies and guitar themes of classic Camel's style, and proved beyond any doubt that the band was back at their best on that album. The eighth track "Lies" was released on "Nude". "Lies" is a strong vocal track that somewhat resembles Pink Floyd, and Mackay delivered an organ solo to prove that he could understand what the kind of keyboards that a progressive band should use in the 80's. The ninth track "Supertwister" was released on "Mirage". "Supertwister" is the nice and most peaceful song on that album. It's a great instrumental track partially dominated by a great flute work by Latimer. He proved on this track that he is a great flute player too. The tenth track "Unevensong" was released on "Rain Dances". "Unevensong" is a song with great musical variations. It's a good and brilliant song. This is a song with many breaks and tempo changes. It has also great Latimer's guitar solos. The eleventh and last track "Rainbow's End" was released on "Breathless". "Rainbow's End" is a short song, very calm and melancholic with beautiful chorus and good arrangements. It closes that album beautifully.

Conclusion: "Chameleon (Best Of Camel)" isn't a great compilation. It isn't well balanced and well representative of Camel's career. It covers all the 70's and the beginning of the 80's. So, apparently it covers the golden musical era of the group which comprises their first four studio albums. However, I think that it isn't totally true. In the first place, we have only one song from "Mirage", two songs from "The Snow Goose" and one song from "Moonmadness". By the other hand, their debut album "Camel" isn't represented. In the second place "Breathless" has two songs and "I Can See Your House From Here" has one song. These are, in my humble opinion, the two weakest albums from Camel with their ninth album "The Single Factor". Fortunately, we have one song from "Rain Dances", which is an excellent album and especially three songs from "Nude", which is, for me, their best studio album from the 80's. So, this isn't the best compilation that we can expect from this great band. Still, it has songs with enough quality to be rated with 3 stars.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Breathless by CAMEL album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.14 | 724 ratings

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Breathless
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by TheDapperFactor

4 stars The most solid "weak" album I've heard

A lot of people like to hate on this album, claiming it is "too poppy" or "not real Camel" and I'll admit I felt the same for quite some time. But over the countless listens to this album i've grown to like it. In fact, I recommend it highly for fans of Camel and others alike.

Breathless| 7.5/10 Pretty standard pop here, and I can't help but think that my liking of this song is mostly influenced by Sinclair's voice. Overall, there's not much to be said about the song.

Echoes| 9.5/10 Absolutely brilliant song. It's often said to be one of the finest they've ever recorded, and I couldn't agree more. For me, this song is a solid example of conservative vocalizing. Now, I am not a huge fan of Latimer's voice (that is until Rajaz), but this is a perfect song for him to sing. The real shining star of this song is Andy Ward. I've always loved Ward's approach to drumming, and this song is no exception. The instrumental parts are simply incredible.

Wing and a Prayer| 6.5/10 Since I began my Camel listening with the classics (Moonmadness, Mirage, Camel), I can't help but dislike this song for one plain reason: Peter Barden's vocals. I love Barden's vocals, but this is not the song for them. The vocals come off rough and I cringe every time I hear the line "The pavement sticks like glue". Now that isn't to say that the song is not good. The instrumentation is pretty good, but the vocals ruin it for me.

Down on the Farm| 7/10 Unlike the last song, the merit in this song is (mostly) vocals, but for very different reasons than most other vocally superior songs. Richard Sinclair wrote this song, and it comes off as a slightly rougher Caravan song. And it most certainly is. The lyrics are clever and Sinclair's delivery of them makes them even more worth listening to. Aside from the whirring flute throughout the duration of the song, there's not much to be said for the instrumentation.

Starlight Ride| 4/10 Remember when I said I don't care for Latimer's vocals? Here is one example. The song is quite good in the context of the album. After the "pseudo-rocker" of "Down on the Farm" comes this song; calming and serene. Latimer's vocals are simply at their worst here. They aren't necessarily bad, just misplaced.

Summer Lightning |8.5/10 Is disco bad? Absolutely. Does it have any musical merit? Yes. Case in point: Summer Lightning (and Another Brick in the Wall, Part II). I actually believe this song, with its similarities to Another Brick in the Wall, Part II (sorry). The main difference is that ABITW is woefully overrated and considered to be one of Gilmour's finest solos, whereas this song is highly underrated (god forbid Camel try and do something different) and Latimer's 3-minute closing solo is simply amazing. The vocals are delivered by the master Mr. Sinclair very delicately and effectively.

You Make Me Smile| 3/10 This song is simply uninteresting and it certainly does not make me smile.

The Sleeper| 8/10 This is Lunar Sea part deux, I don't care what anybody says. Lunar Sea was an amazing song, and this is it's jazzier cousin. It has the benefit of being accompanied by Collins' fantatic sax and really delivers a nice sound, but overall it misses the mark set by Lunar Sea (which is not something to be ashamed of).

Rainbow's End| 5.5/10 Again, not a good piece for Latimer to sing. His falsettos (if they are indeed his) bother the hell out of me. However, the song itself brings the album to a close very effectively, and the instrumentation is crucial in this.

Average: 6.6/10

Weighted Average: 7.1

 Camel (25th Anniversary Compilation)  by CAMEL album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1997
2.37 | 10 ratings

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Camel (25th Anniversary Compilation)
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Review N 178

"Camel (25th Anniversary Compilation)" is a compilation of Camel and was released in 1997. It was released to commemorate the twenty-five years of their career. It covers the period that goes from 1973 to 1984, with songs that belong to their first ten studio albums. Some of the tracks here are single versions, edited versions or live versions.

"Camel (25th Anniversary Compilation)" has eighteen tracks. The ninth track "Never Let Go" was released on "Camel". It's a wonderful piece with Bardens on vocals. He made an amazing keyboard solo very well accompanied by a marvellous Latimer's flute work, too. It's my favourite song on that album. This is a live version. The fifteenth track "Supertwister" was released on "Mirage". It's the nice and most peaceful song on that album. It's a great instrumental track partially dominated by a great flute work by Latimer. He proved on this track that he is a great flute player too. The third and fourth tracks "Rhayader" and "Rhayader Goes To Town" were released on "The Snow Goose". Both tracks have some hints of their classic rock sound. "Rhayader" has a memorable flute melody supported by an organ solo and "Rhayader Goes To Town" as an extended great guitar solo. Both are timeless Camel classics that must be enjoyed in its entirety. The twelfth and eighteenth tracks "Another Night" and "Lunar Sea" were released on "Moonmadness". "Another Night" is the rockiest song on that album with its great riffs and the strong Latimer's vocal work. This is the most aggressive track on that album. Still, it keeps the usual, special and unique Camel's charm. "Lunar Sea" is a song with great individual and collective musical performances. The melody of the song changes and evolves all over the theme. It reminds me something spatial, as its name suggests. Both tracks are single versions. The sixth and fourteenth tracks, "Highways Of The Sun" and "Tell Me" were released on "Rain Dances". "Highways Of The Sun" is a song with some commercial mood and some pop characteristics, but with the final touch of Camel's sound. It's a good example how to make a good pop song by a progressive band. "Tell Me" is a very calm, delicate and beautiful ballad with a fine Latimer's flute working. This is a song that makes us dreaming. "Highways Of The Sun" is a single version and "Tell Me" is a different version. The seventh and thirteenth tracks "Rainbow's End" and "Breathless" were released on "Breathless". "Rainbow's End" is a short song, very calm and melancholic with beautiful chorus and good arrangements. It closes that album with a certain beautiful musical style. This is a single version. "Breathless" represents one of the most beautiful and melodic songs, with a touch of pop, that I've ever listen to from a progressive band. This is an excellent example how a progressive group can make a really good pop song. The first and seventeenth tracks "Remote Romance" and "Wait" were released on "I Can See Your House From Here". "Remote Romance" is unqualified for a Camel's song. It's a pop electronic new wave song completely dislocated of the group's music and even of that album itself. It's really an awful song. This is a single version. "Wait" is a good song in the vein of many Camel's usually open tracks. It has interesting keyboard workings and it has also a nice Latimer's guitar solo. The eleventh and sixteenth tracks "Beached" and "Please Come Home" were released on "Nude". "Beached" is one of the instrumental tracks on that album. There are enough varied elements involved to hold your interest on it. "Please Come Home" is a very short track. It's a very tenderness track that keeps the great beauty of that album. The second and tenth tracks "You Are The One" and "No Easy Answer" were released on "The Single Factor". "You Are The One" is a commercial song, very well structured that keeps the good quality of that album. This is an edited version. "No Easy Answer", that despite be a song written in a pop style, is a song with a typical Camel's sound. The fifth and eighth tracks "Cloak And Dagger Man" and "Fingertips" were released on "Stationary Traveller". "Cloak And Dagger Man" is an electronic song that sounds in the new wave pop style with a very fast and frenetic rhythm. This is a song written in a commercial style that reminds many bands of those times. "Fingertips" is a beautiful, melodic and cool ballad. It's a love song, one of the most commercial songs on that album. It doesn't represent one of highest points of that album.

Conclusion: At a first sight, it seems this is a very good and a very well representative compilation of Camel. It has songs from all their studio albums, at the time, and it covers their golden musical era that goes from 1973 to 1975, the time of their first four studio albums. By the other hand, I sincerely think that Camel never released a real bad album and even their two weakest studio albums "I Can See Your House From Here" and "The Single Factor" are still two good albums. However, "Camel (25th Anniversary Compilation)" is a collection of Camel's short and more commercial songs. But even worse, some of the versions included on this compilation are single versions. As all we know, the single versions are in general shorter to be more commercial. By the other hand, I also don't like very much to see studio and live versions put together on the same compilation. So, the final result is this is merely a good compilation.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Camel On The Road 1972 by CAMEL album cover Live, 1992
3.69 | 115 ratings

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Camel On The Road 1972
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars An archival live recording released in 1992 some 20 years after this concert was recorded in 1972. This has to be one of the earliest recordings of CAMEL's classic lineup as their debut wasn't released until 1973. The four tracks will be familiar to any CAMEL fan but the surprising thing is that only one of these songs made their self titled debut and that was "Six Ate" the instrumental. Perhaps stranger still was that the second album "Mirage" would feature two others from this 1972 recording in "Lady Fantasy" and "White Rider". The final tune is one I'm familiar with from another live album but it was never used on a studio album and that's "God Of Light".

Some brief comments about the four songs as I've already reviewed them on other recordings and these aren't far off the originals, wait a minute aren't these the originals? "Lady Fantasy" is an almost 14 minute classic. The way multiple themes are repeated and the sound of that distorted organ and those laid back, almost whimsical vocals and melancholy, well this is why CAMEL is one of my favourite bands.

"Six Ate" the instrumental is much like the one on the debut with the organ and guitar taking turns leading and the calms that break things up. Applause ends it as it blends into "White Rider" where the applause continues as spacey sounds arrive and relaxed keys. Soon marching styled drums take over then it settles to that familiar melodic guitar after 1 1/2 minutes as our 10 minute ride is on the way. Love the distorted organ and again the vocals. Great track!

"God Of Light" is an instrumental that is not your typical CAMEL. The crazy synths that fire off like shooting stars and also create some experimental sounds take this beyond Symphonic at times although it is certainly that. I'm not sure why I'm settling with 4 stars and not more. It clocks in at just over 44 minutes and it's a pleasure to hear how amazing this band was in a live setting before their first album was even recorded.

 The Single Factor by CAMEL album cover Studio Album, 1982
2.61 | 451 ratings

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The Single Factor
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Review N 166

"The Single Factor" is the ninth studio album of Camel and was released in 1982. It's an album with a strange story. After the release of their eighth and highly successful conceptual studio album "Nude", and after the departure of some band's members, the dependence on alcohol and drugs of Andy Ward, the founder drummer of the group, increased so much that he also failed a suicide attempt. Andrew Latimer saw clearly the problem and decided that Camel should make a break on their career in order to Ward recover from his personal problems. However, their record label Decca, insisted that Camel must honour their contract and must release a new album. Latimer opted to contract a variety of session musicians and invite some friends to recording the album. Of all these musicians deserves a special mention the return of the founder keyboardist of the group Peter Bardens who played keyboards on "Sasquatch" and also the presence of the founder guitarist of Genesis, Anthony Phillips who even composed a song, with Latimer, "End Peace".

So, "The Single Factor" is practically a solo album of Latimer and the choice of the title name wasn't by accident. The title refers the fact that Latimer remains as the sole remaining original member of the group, but it could also be read as an indication of the pressure he was under from the record company to produce a hit single. "The Single Factor" saw Latimer accompanied by an impressive line up of session musicians. Again the emphasis was on shorter songs, mainly under 5 minutes written by Latimer with assistance in the lyric department from partner, Susan Hoover. The end result is a pretty diverse gathering of songs, often sounding half finished, to say the least. But overall, this isn't a bad album.

"The Single Factor" has eleven tracks. The first track "No Easy Answer" written by Latimer is a good song to open the album. Despite being a song written in a pop style it's a nice song with a typical Camel's sound. It's also a song with good guitar and keyboard works. The second track "You Are The One" also written by Latimer is the only song chosen to be released as a single to promote the album. It's a more commercial song, very well structured, but any way, it's also a good song that keeps the good quality of the album. The third track "Heroes" written by Latimer and Hoover represents one of the great moments of the album. The song starts with an instrumental section that reminds us the old good times of their third studio album "The Snow Goose". This is really a beautiful piece of music. The fourth track "Selva" written by Latimer is an instrumental song very calm, beautiful and emotional. Despite it has the main characteristic of Camel's sound, this song reminds me very strongly Pink Floyd, because the guitar sound of Latimer is very close to David Gilmour's style. It's also interesting to note the good work of Phillips on classical guitar. The fifth track "Lullabye" written by Latimer is the shortest song on the album. It's a nice song only with piano and vocals that reminds me also Pink Floyd. The sixth track "Sasquatch" written by Latimer is another instrumental song. It's an interesting song, and the main characteristic of it is that this is the only song of the album featuring the presence of their former keyboardist, Bardens. The seventh track "Manic" written by Latimer and Hoover is a very surprising song for Camel's music. It's a more based mainstream rock song, very energetic with a great rhythm and full of speed. This is, in my humble opinion, one of the hardest and heaviest songs ever made by them. The eighth track "Camelogue" written by Latimer and Hoover is a nice ballad with a good tune that reminds me, in some moments, Foreigner. This is a very melancholic song, a kind of a Camel's autobiography that reflects the painful of the break of their original line up. The ninth track "Today's Goodbye" written by Latimer and Hoover is also a good song. This is a powerful ballad, very melodic and very strong, with good guitar work and nice chorus. The tenth track "A Heart's Desire" written by Latimer and Hoover is a very short, calm and beautiful song. It's a kind of an introduction to the last song. Curiously, this song reminds me very much the typical sound of one of my favourite neo progressive bands, IQ. The eleventh track "End Peace" written by Latimer and Phillips represents a great way to finish the album. It's one of the most beautiful musical pieces made by this fantastic band. The combination of the presence of Latimer and Phillips is so great that they transformed this song into a heavenly song. These two last tracks are perhaps, for me, the highest points of the album.

Conclusion: As I had read before that "The Single Factor" is the weakest studio album of Camel, this was my last purchase of their studio albums. But one thing is for sure, we can't believe in everything we hear or read. "The Single Factor" isn't a weak album, on the contrary, it's a very interesting album. It isn't, in a certain way, inferior to "I Can See Your House From Here", and even we can consider it a more cohesive musical work. So, "The Single Factor" is a good album, at the same level of many of the albums released by other progressive bands like Yes or Genesis in those years, and is even better than some other albums like "Giant For A Day" of Gentle Giant. So and despite its weaknesses, "The Single Factor" is an underrated album of an underrated band. In my humble opinion, Camel never made a weak album.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Stationary Traveller by CAMEL album cover Studio Album, 1984
3.42 | 636 ratings

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Stationary Traveller
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Review N 155

'Stationary Traveller' is the tenth studio album of Camel and was released in 1984. Like many of Camel's studio albums, this is another conceptual album. This time is about the Cold War and the story is centred on the trials of East German refugees attempting to cross the famous and shameful Berlin Wall who divided the city between East and West. I'm perfectly convinced this was a matter very nostalgic for Latimer that made him to release this album. The nostalgia is present all over the album, and the cover itself invokes a very desolate, desperate and despondent post war Germany, a solitary young woman amidst the aging architecture of a city scarred by the war and its numerous effects.

By this time, and as happened with their previous studio album 'The Single Factor', Camel was essentially an Andrew Latimer's band. The line up of this album is Andrew Latimer (lead vocals, electric, acoustic and 12 string guitars, bass, piano, flute and drum synthesizer), Ton Scherpenzeel (organ, grand piano, Prophet synthesizer, Yamaha CS80, Juno 60, Korg, PPg and accordion), Chris Rainbow (lead vocals), David Paton (backing vocals, bass and fretless bass), Paul Burgess (drums), Mel Collins (saxophone) and Haydn Bendall (Fairlight synthesizer and PPg synthesizer).

'Stationary Traveller' has ten tracks. The first track 'Pressure Points' written by Latimer is an instrumental short song that introduces us into the album and also establishes immediately the atmosphere of what will be the music on the album. This is a very beautiful way to open the album. The second track 'Refugee' written by Latimer and Susan Hoover is a good and melodious rock song. It's a very solid track with a modern sound with electronic drums but where the presence of Latimer's guitar is constant. So, the final result is a very well balanced track. The third track 'Vopos' written by Latimer and Hoover is a very good and interesting song. It's a very dark song where the lyrics are highly dramatic but very melodious too. This is, in my humble opinion, a song in the new wave style that sounds modern and where the electronic drumming gives the rhythm. The fourth track 'Cloak And Dagger Man' written by Latimer and Hoover is another electronic song that sounds in the new wave pop style with a very fast and frenetic rhythm. This is a song written in a more commercial style that reminds us so many other bands of those times. The fifth track 'Stationary Traveller' is the title track and was written by Latimer. This is another instrumental song that represents the return to the typical sound of Camel. Here we have the guitar sound that reminds me the sound of Mark Knopfler of Dire Straits, the beautiful sound of pan pipes and the typical and unique Latimer's sound, probably featuring one of the best guitar solos performed by him. Until now, this is the best song on the album where we can see Latimer at his best. This is without any doubt one of the high moments of this album too. The sixth track 'West Berlin' written by Latimer and Hoover is a very interesting song with a nice rhythm and also with good musical passages. This is another song clearly influenced by the new wave style, with fine textures and also very well produced. I think we can feel here the presence of Alan Parsons' hand. The seventh track 'Fingertips' written by Latimer and Hoover is a very beautiful, melodic and cool ballad. This is a love song, one of the most commercial songs of the album, and despite has the return of the nice sound of the saxophone of Collins, doesn't represent one of highest points of the album. The eighth track 'Missing' written by Latimer is another instrumental song based on electronic drumming. This is a very beautiful song with very satisfactory melodic changes that remains in our ears. I think this is a song more in the neo-prog vein. The ninth track 'After Words' written by Scherpenzeel is again an instrumental song, very short, and is a kind of an introduction to the last song on the album. This is one of the nice moments of the album, only performed by piano and accordion. The tenth and last track 'Long Goodbyes' written by Latimer and Hoover is a very epic and mellow ballad, probably too much mellow, but it's, in anyway, a very nice way to ending this curious and interesting musical work, from the 80's.

Conclusion: Like our colleague greenback, I also like Camel's sound of the 80's and I also agree with him when he says that Camel knew how to cope and introduce the new technology into their music. Probably only Camel and Genesis, of the greatest progressive bands of the 70's, were capable of doing that. 'Stationary Traveller' is an album with a very modern sound, for those times, clearly influenced by pop and new wave music with a touch of the traditional Camel's sound. So, this is a nice album of the 80's with some very good songs. 'Stationary Traveller' is undoubtedly their best second studio album from the 80's, after 'Nude'. 'Stationary Traveller' is also their last studio work of the 80's and we may say that Camel passed with certain elegance, by those terrible years for the progressive rock music. But fortunately, great things would happen in the following years, for Camel and for the progressive rock music in general. Their four next studio albums are all great and represent the returning of Camel to their classic musical roots.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Moonmadness by CAMEL album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.38 | 2105 ratings

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Moonmadness
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Moonmadness is a tough one for me. On one hand, the dreamy and pastoral symphonic vibe feels prosaic and at times even bland; on the other, the band blends in moments of upbeat energy and lush beauty. It's a mixed bag, which I don't feel deserves the 50+% 5-star rating it has here on the Archives. As of this writing, I've listened to the record 20 times, and am still wondering where the "masterpiece" label is coming from. With that being said, Moonmadness is still quite good. Let's dig in.

Overall this album blends approachable symphonic prog with a delightful rock energy. At it's heaviest, Camel is still somewhat wimpy rock, but that's not a problem here. For Moonmadness, it's all about the vibe, which is quite enjoyable. We're given mostly instrumental works with good variety. If you like dreamy flutes and lush keyboards--you're covered. If you like excellent instrumental chops and a jazzy undertone--you're good. If you like the occasional up-swell of guitar rockin'--don't fret. Basically, this album has something for everyone ... with one notable exception: the vocals. Ferguson's vocals here are not good. They sound processed and pushed into the background, maybe in an attempt to mask their unenergetic feel. Lyrically what few moments of singing are fine, sort of simple but evocative. Bottom-line here is that you won't be touched or inspired by vocals, but by the atmosphere.

Musically the songs are deft and played quite well. Keyboard standouts by Bardens deserve attention, while the rhythm section of Freguson and Ward sound great. Camel's instrumental proficiency really can't be balked, which is maybe what pushes this album into 4-star territory for me. It's hard to pick a standout, because the songs flow nicely and each have a lot of twists and turns packed into each.

If you're in the mood for thoughtful, meditative prog-rock that sort of unfolds as you listen Moonmadness is right up your alley. It's not a masterpiece in my opinion, and may leave some listeners feeling like they just took a dose of ambien, but most fans of classic prog will be ready for another hit.

Songwriting: 4 - Instrumental Performances: 4 - Lyrics/Vocals: 2 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 3

 I Can See Your House From Here by CAMEL album cover Studio Album, 1979
2.87 | 621 ratings

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I Can See Your House From Here
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Review N 143

As many of we know, Camel never achieved the mass popularity of their fellow British progressive rock groups from the 70's like Genesis, Pink Floyd, Emerson, Lake & Palmer and King Crimson. However, they were able to cultivate a dedicated and very loyal cult of fans and they never ceased to be one of the bands most respected in the progressive rock community. With their music, all over the years, they always were one of the groups that more bands influenced inside of our progressive rock world. Even today they continue to be one of the most respected progressive groups.

Personally, Camel was my second love, after Genesis. My first two vinyl albums, purchased by me in the distant 70's, were the fifth studio album of Genesis "Selling England By The Pound", which was released in 1973 and the third studio album of Camel "The Snow Goose", which was released in 1975. Therefore, they've always been, for me, truly faithful and beloved friends who always accompanied me throughout these more than forty years of progressive rock music.

"I Can See Your House From Here" is the seventh studio album of Camel and was released in 1979. This album caused some problems with the advertisers because it shows on its cover a crucified astronaut looking at the Earth. It marked also the debut of a new line up of Camel. With the only remaining two founding members of Camel, Andrew Latimer and Andy Ward, joined the band the bassist Colin Bass who replaced Richard Sinclair and two keyboardists Jan Schelhaas, who joined in 1978 for the "Breathless" live tour and the ex-Happy The Man, Kit Watkins who replaced Dave Sinclair.

So, the line up of the album is Andrew Latimer (lead and backing vocals, guitars, flute and autoharp), Andy Ward (drums and percussion), Colin Bass (lead and backing vocals and bass), Jan Schelhaas (Yamaha CS80, Yamaha electric grand piano, grand piano, Prophet-5, Moog synthesizer, Minimoog and EMS sequencer) and Kit Watkins (Hammond C3 organ, Solina synthesizer, Yamaha electric grand piano, Rhodes piano, Moog synthesizer, Minimoog, clavinet, Prophet-5, Yamaha CS80, EMS sequencer and flute). The album had also the participation of Mel Collins (alto saxophone), Phil Collins (percussion), Rupert Hine (backing vocals) and Simon Jeffes (orchestral arrangements).

"I Can See Your House From Here" has nine tracks. The first track "Wait" written by Latimer and John McBurnie represents a good start for the album and is a song in the vein of Camel's usually open tracks. This is a good song with interesting keyboard workings and it has also a nice Latimer's guitar solo. The second track "Your Love Is Stranger Than Mine" written by Latimer, Ward, Schelhaas and Bass is a very melodic song with a pop style. It's a song with nice vocal harmonies in the wave of the commercial hits. It's a simple and good song but with nothing special on it. The third track "Eye Of The Storm" written by Watkins is a beautiful song with nice melody. It's a different song, an instrumental, and is one of my favourite songs on the album. This is, in my humble opinion, a song with a higher quality level than the most of the album. The fourth track "Who We Are" written by Latimer is one of the lengthiest tracks on the album. Despite being simpler than the songs usually composed by Latimer is a song with his mark. This is a good song, one of the best of the album. The fifth track "Survival" written by Latimer is the smallest song on the album and is a kind of a prelude of other music. It's an instrumental track with beautiful string arrangements and despite be short is an interesting song. The sixth track "Hymn To Her" written by Latimer and Schelhaas is a song with a traditional Camel's opening. It's a beautiful ballad with a good instrumental section. This is also an interesting and good song. The seventh track "Neon Magic" written by Latimer, Schelhaas and Viv McAuliffe is one of the weakest songs on the album. It's a very commercial song, uninspired and something repetitive. It's a song that shouldn't be on the album. The eighth track "Remote Control" written by Latimer and Watkins is unqualified for a Camel's song. It's a pop electronic new wave song completely dislocated of the group's music and even of the album itself. It's really an awful song. The ninth track "Ice" written by Latimer is the lengthiest track on the album and is also the best. It's a classic Camel's long instrumental track, the only song truly progressive on the album and the only song that shows Latimer at his best.

Conclusion: In reality, "I Can See Your House From Here" isn't a bad Camel's album at all. But of all their studio albums this is one of the weakest studio albums ever made by them, the weakest made in the 70's. This is another album near of the 80's, and another example of the great difficulty of the majority of the great progressive groups from de 70's, in adapting their music to post-punk and new wave movements. By the other hand, it represents also the first album without Peter Bardens and where Latimer becomes the only leader of the group. It was also their first album with two new keyboardists. So, it isn't surprising that "I Can See You House From Here" be an album of change, a weaker album that somewhat represents an album of some disappointment for fans and critics too. However, I think it has some interesting symphonic progressive music on it and the last song "Ice" probably deserves its purchase by itself.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 The Paris Collection by CAMEL album cover Live, 2001
3.61 | 74 ratings

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The Paris Collection
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by penmar

4 stars I found this album completely amazing . Taking into account that it is a live album I was surprised to the excellent quality of sound. Ican also remark that those vocals that Collins was compelled to sing due to the bad health of Anderw Latimer are achieved in the most succesful way . Being most of the album instrumental there is a lack of very good tracks i would have liked to be included .Anyway i think we have here the best version for this wonderful track.As Camel has his fans accotumed the instruments sound is refined and melodic,and the aerial music complete the musical enviroment with that sort of magical and nostalgical note.I think it own 4 stars just for the basic fact that we would have needed Andrew Latimer at his best to put into his personal touch to complete the magic of this album doubtless one of the most beautiful of progressive music alive.
 Nude by CAMEL album cover Studio Album, 1981
3.62 | 694 ratings

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Nude
Camel Symphonic Prog

Review by KolbiterProg

4 stars Nude is a conceptual album, like many in the Progressive Rock scene, but it has to be analyzed by its different aspects, the musical composition, the originality, the depth of the theme. The first time I listened to it, I was fascinated by Andy Latimer's melodies that showed a deep connection with the story that makes up his concept. In the end, it shows us a story with the sensitivity that impresses on the music and the history written in the lyrics. Well, to the subject, Nude tells us the story of a Japanese soldier at the time of the Second World War. The album begins with the experience of living in a country like Japan at that time, calling on the armed forces to fulfill their country and sees in its own flesh the horrors of war on an island in the Pacific. These horrors paralyze him and make him lose his sense, which he recovers perhaps days later. To his surprise, he is alone on a deserted island, he was simply so indispensable, he did not figure or maybe if, like a low in the Japanese army. History takes its turn, he has to stay there and follow the rules that were established, to fulfill his duty, hoping that help will soon arrive to take him with them. This was a real story of that soldier, Hiroo Onoda who spent 30 years on an island, thinking that the war was still going on. It shows the human side of a soldier who, being only one piece on a huge board in that war, was ignored and left to his fate. Musically it is very well done, in my particular taste Drafted and Lies are my favorite, but it really is to listen complete. I liked it a lot as they carry a style of narrating a story with a very good development and in the end the climax and resolution that leave us the message of the album.
Thanks to Ivan_Melgar_M for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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